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“So What Do You Do For Work?”

May 24, 2013

I’ve recently passed my 1 year mark of being self-employed, and not a day goes by that I don’t have to go into a 20 minute explanation of what I do, and who I work for.  And while I normally enjoy those discussions, and just finished a post on that particular topic, I thought I was would share some key points of those conversations.

 WHEN PEOPLE TELL ME THAT THAT I HAVE THE EASIEST JOB IN THE WORLD (after seeing me work 16 hours days 7 days a week).


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On Wanting to be the Dumbest Person in the Room

April 15, 2013

I had the pleasure of being part of the TedxWaterloo team a few weeks ago. This was my third year, and I learn something new every time. The work is really hard for 5-6 months every year and we put on a heck of a show. The best thing about my role is the fact that I work with the speakers directly. This unrestricted access can get to a girl’s head really easily.  Being the nerd groupie that I am, I couldn’t help but jump at the chance to spend an hour with each of them alone when Ford Canada offered to give us two Ford Escapes for 3 days. Up until then, most of my correspondence with the speakers was via email.

While we normally have a car service pick up the speakers from the airport, the car fanatic in me decided to go and pick them up myself, and show off the Escapes a bit. If you’re a regular reader, you know how I feel about cars. The Escapes were roomy (enough to shuttle 5 speakers back and forth from events), and had features that had me  swooning. The best one being the blind spot sensor. My current car has a turbocharged engine in it which doesn’t bode well for me as I have a lead foot, but I found the Escapes to speed up at a steady pace. They were surprisingly really good on gas, too. The need to test out the cars, along with wanting to catch up and chat with some really really smart people lead me to the airport a few times.

At the wrap-up party, someone asked me what it felt like to be the dumbest person in the car, including the car. And while I could have taken that as an insult, I realized that it was true. I hung out with CERN Physicists, and NASA Engineers over those 3 days. And the car? Well the car detected if there was a another car in my blindspot.

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On Hobbies That I don’t Have Time For

March 2, 2013

I normally never post on a Saturday. Mostly because I forget to come up with something on friday night, or spend most of saturday on the hill trying to get better than my brother at snowboarding. The problem with that is that he is a snowboard instructor and I will never be anywhere near as good. But I keep trying because its brother-sister bonding time.

Snowboarding is just one of those hobbies that has consumed at a point in my life. I boxed for 6 years when I was younger, and spent hours getting better. The problem with boxing is that it gives you a false sense of confidence in your strength. I aslo spent a TON on soccer, but was a sport that is “in our blood” as my mom says. My entire family plays and has been since we were 4.

My latest hobby, photography, is one that I can’t get a handle on. I’ve taken classes, and understand the basics, but I can’t handle everything as well I want to. Perhaps its because I don’t practice, or perhaps I’m not artistic enough, either way. Its something that I want to conquer adequately. We have a ton of spring photoshoots lined up for Chic Darling over the next month and I want to be able to produce the best work possible. The thing that got me really excited was that I can buy an entire backdrop and lighting kit from Amazon for under $200!

I wondering if having a studio in my house would be valuable since I can’t work my camera properly, but hey!


Source: via StyleSweets Magazine on Pinterest


Speaking of photography, are you looking to get a new camera? If so, a few fellow bloggers and I are giving away a DSLR Camera valued at $1,149. You should enter!

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Why Do We Always Need the “Bigger/Better” Version?

February 3, 2013

I write this while sitting in my living room watching the Superbowl. My brother, being the genius that he is, is able to find a way for me to watch the game with American commercials. Besides the horrible HORRIBLE GoDaddy commercials, everything else tried to sell me a different life. Or at least a “better” version of what I have.  This got me thinking, and while I don’t claim to be the poster child for being content with with I have, I never understood ridiculous extravagance either.

Disclaimer: these feelings might be left over from watching over priced homes on HGTV. 

I keep watching people want bigger houses, and better cars (well the cars thing I can see), but the house thing throws me off. I get that we want the world to know that we’re successful. I also get that people want space to run around, but only in North America have I seen a family of 3 need a house with 2800 sq. ft. That amount of space is enough for 3-4 families in other countries.

I say this, not because I’m judging, but more curious to know why North Americans feel the need to have the bigger version of everything. Major city housing market is slightly different, but that’s partially due to a highly dense population, and low availability of properties/space. What I don’t get is why families in the suburbs need huge properties. Perhaps I notice this because  I watch a lot of House Hunters, or perhaps its because I travelled in lived in countries like Brazil, and Sri Lanka.  Houses there have 1 sitting room and 1-2 bedrooms if you’re lucky. And you know what? Thats the norm.

There is something to be said about contentment, you know? Like being happy living in a hut in Bali, or a 3 storey walkup in Queens. I’m scared that at some point, I lost my priorities, or at least got them mixed up and started focusing on the wrong things.

Sorry for the sappiness. My best friend’s sister just came back from Nepal, and lived in room the size of a hut for 3 months. The way she describes how happy people were with how little they had makes me want to look at what my goals are. I’m sure the feeling will pass tomorrow, so carry on, folks.

PS. Did anyone else notice that almost all of the superbowl commercials were either about cars, phones, or beer?


Orea Superbowl Tweet




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On Passion for Blogging and Burnouts

January 8, 2013

Its 11:48 pm on a Monday night. I’ve had the last 4 weeks off, and spent it with family and friends, went snowboarding a lot, worked out a little, and did my best to quietly relaunch Chic Darling from a blog into a magazine. We have some fantastic team members who have come on board, and its starting to feel like a real magazine.  The last 2 hours of tonight was spent on a Skype with two of my favorite blogging friends, S from American Debt Project, and LaTisha from Young Finances. We try to get on a call every week. We lay out our plans for the following week; not just for blogging, but life in general.

This is what blogging is. When I started writing my first post/blog back in May of 2011, I didn’t think I would last this long. Heck, I took a leave for 3 months because life got in the middle of it. But that didn’t stop me from coming back. I write because the accountability of announcing public goals motivates me further.  I also write because I feel like this is my platform. The fact that I have people come by and read still humbles me; regardless of if I have 10 people stop by of 2000. Someone somewhere took precious time out of their schedule to come by and read what I have to write.  Sometime I rant, sometimes I confess to mistakes in the past, sometimes I want to share things that amaze me, but through it all, I’m still humbled that people come by and read.

Blogging is not a get rick quick scheme. I would make more money working at McDonalds on a per hour basis. And to be quite honest, I don’t know why I keep writing on here, but I keep doing it. Part of it is the fact that I’ve created a small little oasis for myself where I have control over the editorial content.


Source: via Jessica on Pinterest



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